Cave de Tain's Jerome-Benoit Kelagopian gives me the lowdown on the secret of making excellent co-op wines at Toronto's Biff's restaurant.

Cave de Tain’s Jerôme-Benoit Kelagopian gives me the lowdown on the secret of making excellent co-op wines at Toronto’s Biff’s restaurant.


In the early part of the 20th century the establishment and expansion of wine co-operatives was instrumental in transforming the industry, allowing small grape growers to group together, pull resources and share costs to produce and subsequently market wines collectively. 

Unfortunately in many cases such endeavours became focused primarily upon volume production with nary a thought for the quality of the wines, and over the decades the collective reputation of the wine co-op fell into a terrible state of disrepute.

Thankfully, in relatively recent times, a handful of co-ops have gone through dramatic changes with a view to greatly increasing the overall quality of the finished product and focusing upon what has now become a truly international market.

One shining example of this philosophical turnaround would be the northern Rhône valley’s Cave de Tain.

Having been fascinated by the concept of these premium wine co-operatives for some time, it was terrific to sit down with Cave de Tain’s Jerôme-Benoit Kelagopian for a discussion about his company’s wines.

This is Part 1 of a two part interview. Look out for Part 2 next week.




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Cave de Tain are represented in Ontario by Noble Estates.

Noble Estates are a Good Food Fighter.

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Jamie Drummond

Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And those were some cracking wines. More please…